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Brothers 'United' after unusual pact


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LONDON, England (Reuters) - A Manchester United soccer fan donated cells so his brother could have a life-saving transplant -- on condition his sibling switched his support from arch rivals Manchester City.

Retired management consultant Martin Warburton, 50, asked his brother Paul, 59, to sign a light-hearted contract pledging to join the United fan club.

"We made a great joke of the contract, but he still agreed to sign," Martin Warburton told Friday's Daily Telegraph newspaper. "I just hope now that it will save his life."

Paul, who had the transplant to fight lymphatic leukemia, was philosophical over the switch between the fiercely competitive northwest England teams.

"I was really lucky that Martin's cells matched," said Paul. "But he had to be a Reds' supporter, didn't he?" The Reds is the nickname of Manchester United.



Copyright 2003 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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